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September 18, 2000
Pakistan hammer Great Britain
Penalty-corner specialist Sohail Abbas scored the first hat-trick of the men's hockey competition as Pakistan whipped thirce gold medallists Great Britain 8-1 in a group A match.
After the disppointing 2-2 draw against Canada in their opening match, it was a different Pakistan one witnessed on Monday. To put it simply, it was superb skill and clinical finishing as the Asian powerhouse ran roughshod over Great Britain, Olympic champions in 1908, 1920 and 1988.
Pakistan got five penalty-corners and converted four of them. Three goals came from field play while one from a penalty stroke.
In another match in the same group, Germany got the better of Canada by the odd goal in three.
Abbas put Pakistan ahead within six minutes from a penalty stroke and then converted two penalty-corners, one before and after Mohammad Nadeem had scored from a penalty-corner to put Pakistan high in the saddle with a 4-1 scoreline at half-time.
Britain, who lost their opening match to The Netherlands 4-2 on Saturday, narrowed the gap to 3-1 through Mark Pearn off a penalty-corner in the 19th minute. They were awarded another 11 penalty-corners in the match, but couldn't convert even once more.
Pakistan did not get a single penalty-corner in the second half, but then none were required as first Atif Bashir, then Kamran Ashraf, Mohamad Sarwar and finally Mohamed Nadeem with his second for the match slammed in four field goals to compound Britain's day of misery.
It was Britain's worst defeat in Olympic competition. Their heaviest defeat previously was a 7-0 rout by Australia at Tokyo in 1964. But they have only themselves to blame. The had 20 shots at goal compared to 12 by Pakistan and forced 12 penalty-corners to Pakistan's 5.
Canada, returning to the Olympics after 12 years, appeared set for an upset win against Germany when Bindi Kullar put them ahead with nine minutes to go.
But the Germans drew level the next minute through Bjoern Michel, before Ulrich Moissl scored the winner two minutes before the end.
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